Barbara and Grayden led us in the bandstand this week.
Over the summer we all used our Anum Cara liturgy on Sunday mornings. As we are moving on to a second year of Third Space we tried to link the summer liturgy to our next topic for worship.
So what does Anum Cara mean? (What would we do without the internet?)
Anum Cara refers to the Celtic spiritual belief of souls connecting and bonding. It literally means soul friend. In Celtic Spiritual tradition, it is believed that the soul radiates all about the physical body, what some refer to as an aura.
Anum Cara symbolises a spiritual friendship that is not affected by time or distance or separation. The Anum Cara is someone you can share your innermost self with. Should such a deep bond of trust be formed it is said that you have found your Anum Cara or soul friend.
Your Anum Cara always accepts you as you truly are, holding you in beauty and light. In order to appreciate this relationship, you must first recognise you own inner light and beauty. This is not always easy to do. The Celts believed that forming an Anum Cara friendship would help you to awaken your awareness of your own nature and experience the joys of others. An Anum Cara always affirms you and will help you to recognise what is important in life. adapted from The Meaning of Anum Cara from www.basaltheritage.org
We used water and a candle to meditate on our own inner beauty and light.
“Spend a few minutes of quiet and think about your gifts, your love for others and the way you try to follow Jesus in the world in which you live.”
We read from John 4 about Jesus meeting the Samaritan woman at the well. In the Gospel story we see Jesus in what could be said to be a Anum Cara encounter.
“The woman comes alone to the well alone in the midday heat. A man is there. Flaunting convention, he speaks to her “give me a drink.” Every man this woman meets wants something from her. She is vulnerable and alone but she challenges him, feisty and flirtatious, masking her fear. He offers her water that will quench her thirst for ever, and she longs for this abundance that would liberate her from life defined in terms of survival and thirst. But there is a catch. “Go call your husband.” “I have no husband,” she says defiantly. Then he astonishes her, for he seems to know all there is to know about her. He knows about the hungry, thirsty children, and the men who abandon her. But he also knows about her deeper thirst, her yearning for love, her sense that there must be more to life than this. She feels something stirring within her, coming alive. It is more fragile than faith. It is the first trickle of hope. “He cannot be the Messiah can he?” ” JUST ONE YEAR Prayer and Worship through the Christian Year, edited by Timothy Radcliffe, a Christian Aid and Cafod publication.
We challenged Harry to shake a bottle of sparkling water and then take off the top. This was supposed to show how the Holy Spirit (living water) in us should gush and overflow into the world around us.
We used water again in our prayer time, placing stones into the water to symbolise people, places or events we were praying for. We also placed our hands into the water as we prayed for ourselves.
When we came to the time of sharing bread and wine we used our lovely Companions Liturgy that Steve wrote. It reminded us of our visit to St. Non’s Well on our Pilgrimage Day in Pembrokeshire.
To end our time in the bandstand Barbara and Grayden blessed everyone with water saying:
“Deep Peace of the living water to you, Deep Peace of the running water to you, Deep Peace of the shining stars to you, Deep Peace of the still earth to you, Deep Peace of the Infinite Peace to you”